Thrifts -- savings and loans institutions that use depositor's funds to make loans -- increased their share of originations of mortgages for one- to four-family homes to 30 percent during the third quarter, compared with 21.5 percent a year ago. But the savings and loan industry's enthusiasm for mortgages also had a downside, with profits falling 84 percent to $704 million, according to a report by the Office of Thrift Supervision. Thrifts booked $4.29 billion in profits during the third quarter a year ago, and $3.83 billion just a quarter ago. The decline in profit was due to higher loan-loss provisions and losses on sales of loans for thrifts engaged most heavily in originating mortgage for sale on the secondary market, the report said. The 831 thrifts supervised by OTS originated $185.7 billion in loans during the third quarter, an 8 percent increase from a year ago but down slightly from the $194.6 billion in loans originated in the second quarter. All told, thrift...
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